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Proceedings Paper

ESO scalable architecture for operational databases
Author(s): I. Vera; A. Dobrzycki; A. M. Chavan; P. Nass; J. S. Lockhart
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Paper Abstract

The European Organisation for Astronomical Research in the Southern Hemisphere (ESO), headquartered in Garching, Germany, operates different state-of-the-art observing sites in Chile. To manage observatory operations and observation transfer, ESO developed an end-to-end Data Flow System, from Phase I proposal preparation to the final archiving of quality-controlled science, calibration and engineering data. All information pertinent to the data flow is stored in the central databases at ESO headquarters and replicated to and from the observatory database servers. In the ESO's data flow model one can distinguish two groups of databases; the front-end databases, which are replicated from the ESO headquarters to the observing sites, and the back-end databases, where replication is directed from the observations to the headquarters. A part of the front-end database contains the Observation Blocks (OBs), which are sequences of operations necessary to perform an observation, such as instrument setting, target, filter and/or grism ID, exposure time, etc. Observatory operations rely on fast access to the OB database and quick recovery strategies in case of a database outage. After several years of operations, those databases have grown considerably. There was a necessity in reviewing the database architecture to find a solution that support scalability of the operational databases. We present the newly developed concept of distributing the OBs between two databases, containing operational and historical information. We present the architectural design in which OBs in operational databases will be archived periodically at ESO headquarters. This will remedy the scalability problems and keep the size of the operational databases small. The historical databases will only exist in the headquarters, for archiving purposes.

Paper Details

Date Published: 12 July 2008
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 7016, Observatory Operations: Strategies, Processes, and Systems II, 70161B (12 July 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.787587
Show Author Affiliations
I. Vera, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
A. Dobrzycki, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
A. M. Chavan, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
P. Nass, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
J. S. Lockhart, European Southern Observatory (Germany)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7016:
Observatory Operations: Strategies, Processes, and Systems II
Roger J. Brissenden; David R. Silva, Editor(s)

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